Antonio Brown is an absolute mess. His brief tenure with the Oakland Raiders has been an abject disaster and the 31-year-old isn’t done freaking out just yet. It’s more clear than ever that the Raiders made a horrible decision when they opted to trade for him.
Since training camp started, Brown has gotten frostbite on his feet from entering a cryotherapy machine without proper footwear, disappeared from camp and went radio silent, then told team officials that he won’t ever play again unless he can use his now-banned helmet. Just so we’re clear, the Raiders opened camp less than two weeks ago. Yeah, it’s a whirlwind of insanity.
The Raiders landed Brown in a March trade with the Pittsburgh Steelers in exchange third- and fifth-round selections in the 2019 NFL Draft. Oakland then gave AB a massive three-year, $50.125 million contract. So he should technically be pretty happy with things. Yep, this is Brown when he’s content with his salary scenario.
Brown is a seven-time Pro Bowler and a four-time First-Team All-Pro. He’s on the path to be a Hall of Famer, since he’s been one of the most dominant players of his era. In his nine NFL seasons he’s gained 11,207 yards and 74 touchdowns on 837 receptions. Even while splitting touches with Juju Smith-Schuster last season, Brown still racked up 1,297 yards and an NFL-high 15 touchdowns on 104 receptions.
Brown is still a fantastic receiver despite his age, but is he worth the headache? At this point, probably not.
When they handed Jon Gruden a 10-year, $100 million contract, the Raiders knew he’d bring a circus with him. But I’m not sure they expected this kind of mess this quickly. After the Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper fiascos last season, the last thing Oakland needed was its biggest new addition to be a massive problem.
Outside of Brown, the Raiders don’t have much to be excited about on offense. Derek Carr is still shaky at quarterback, Josh Jacobs is a rookie running back, Doug Martin is an average back, Tyrell Williams is a deep threat with an inconsistent history and the offensive line is a huge question mark. Brown was supposed to be the offense’s focal point and leader. Instead, he’s a joke.
Right now, it sure looks like the Raiders screwed up big time by trading for Brown and handing him a massive contract.